From Blood’s History: Visitors


Not all Cross visitors arrive from Gods’ Hollow. While their points of origin may not be exotic today, they certainly were for their time. Specifically, I refer to the delegates from Japan, a trio of men who arrived in Cross in 1866 when I was recently returned home from the war of the rebellion.

The Japanese men, warriors all, were in search of a small chest which was stolen from their lord’s family early in the middle of the 17th century, and which was reported to be in Cross. With the relaxation of Japan’s strict regulations regarding travel, the men were given permission to carry out the quest to retrieve it.

The chest was indeed in Cross, and it was in the possession of Gilbert Gubar, Esquire, a gentleman of some renown in Boston law circles. He had inherited it from his father, who had purchased the item from one of Cross’ sailing families after they stole it from one of Japan’s smaller islands. Within the chest was a silver heart. Not the shabby, symmetrical heart emblem of Valentine’s Day, but an anatomically correct organ wrought perfectly.

It was the heart of a grand patriarch, and the lord’s family wanted it back.

For several hours we negotiated with Mr. Gubar for the heart. The gentleman saw, however, that the warriors were intent upon obtaining the item at any cost, and so he continued to raise the price. In the end, it was worth far more than he understood.

The warriors returned home with the patriarch’s heart and Mr. Gubar’s head.

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The Library


From, Blood’s History: The Library


My private library lies deep beneath the cellar of Blood farmhouse. For someone as long-lived as myself, books have been a constant friend. I have collected an eclectic selection of works both well-known and obscure, and some which have been both at various times in their existence.

It pleases me to say that I have known genius’ such as John Steinbeck, and veritable devils such as Mather and his kin. While none of Mather’s works soil my shelves, I have everything Steinbeck published, as well as some he sent only to me, tucked away.

Among treasures such as these, however, are books far more dangerous. Works and ideas known to kill with the slightest caress of their pages.

And if you think books are not dangerous, then you are a fool.

Ideas are wicked entities. They can enter your thoughts, wrap themselves around some vital part of your workings and squeeze until you have no concept of what you are doing. Some books, like any object, can become haunted, the dead clinging to the manuscripts, traveling with them and ruining lives.

I keep my most prized possessions, and the most dangerous as well, in my private library, far from the eyes of foolish people. They are kept away from prying eyes. Not only because the books are mine, but because I am tired of hiding bodies.

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From, Blood’s History: Graves


I am not a nice man. Fair, at most times, though I am quick to anger. It has taken several hundred years to come to grips with these aspects of myself. A look back at my history and the history of my family reveals these are common traits.

I come by my anger honestly.

Over the decades I have put a great many people in the ground. Each one of them needed killing, although not all deserved to die. The worst of them, the foulest, I have kept with me. They are buried here, on Blood Farm.

In the center of the property, far from prying eyes, there are three tombs. Each contains a person who I could no longer suffer to live. They drew their last breaths in front of me and in their tombs.

I will not name the individuals, nor will I give any hint as to when they vanished from Cross society. And yes, they were all natives. The history of our town is riddled with disappearances over its almost four centuries of existence.

Each came to me of their own volition. One thinking to trick me. The second to wed me. And the third to settle a debt, which I suppose he did, in a way.

We strolled out to the tombs beneath warm, August nights.

They died in the dim light of lanterns while January storms raged above us.

I visit the tombs on occasion, and I wonder when I will need to prepare a fourth.

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From, Blood’s History: 1938


There is much truth hidden within the depths of rumors, legends, and gossip. Especially in New England, more so in Cross.

One of the many notable features of my family’s farm is our apple orchard. It is a large and impressive collection of trees, some of which were planted as early as 1635. Rumor has it there is a body beneath each tree. This is false.

There are only bodies beneath trees planted after the 1938 hurricane which tore through Massachusetts. I lost a large number of trees, so many, in fact, that the deaths of the others from sadness was a real and distinct threat. In order to save them, I began to harvest the dead, using them as the foundation for saplings.

It was an excellent decision. Not only did the new trees thrive, but the older trees produced more fruit. Over the years I have had occasion to replace trees as they die. I am well-prepared for these unfortunate eventualities. I have an agreement with several funeral homes in the area, and, should there be a dearth of bodies, I keep a private list of individuals who have, in my opinion, forfeited their right to live.

My trees are far more worthwhile than many I meet. And, in all honesty, the apples simply taste better.

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The House


From, Blood’s History


The house is not what it seems, nor has it ever been.

Her bones were laid down in 1640 by my father. Over the centuries I have added on where my father left off. The Blood Farm is a structure I cannot seem to control. There are rooms which are stable, of course. The kitchen and my bedroom, the main library and the room of armaments. Others, though, are best left alone and ignored. My mother’s sewing room is one of them.

A great deal of her hate and spite continue to reside in the room. Some relatives, in the past, ignored my admonitions and my warnings, much to their regret. Two men died in the room, their hearts pierced by needles. A young woman was scarred heavily about the face, causing her to subsequently offer herself up to the Gallows tree by the pond.

Some nights I find it best to go armed through the house. On rarer occasions, it is safest to stay in my room until the unknown creatures wandering the halls put themselves abed.

Lately, I have taken to locking the sewing room, an act which has cut down on the random dangers. But it is a temporary solution at best.

Despite being dead, she always finds a way to destroy the locks and set her monsters to roaming.

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April 12, 1930


From the Gods’ Hollow journal of Duncan Blood.


April 12, 1930.

I came upon an old structure today, one that I remember building alongside my father and my uncles.

It had once housed the weapons and foodstuffs of both the Bloods and the Coffins before the New World was ours. We had hidden there, during raids, hunkering down to defend ourselves against the attacks of our Native American neighbors when they grew tired of our company.

And I remember when the building vanished from the strip of land between Blood Farm and Coffin Farm. My father had been in it, putting away the new rifles purchased from a gunsmith in Pennsylvania.

We searched for years, hopeful that the building might reappear, and that my father might still be alive.

Stranger things have occurred, of course, but it was not meant to be. For decades and centuries passed. He and the building remained missing.

Standing near it, I felt a sense of dread. Would it be better to know what happened to my father, rather than continued wishful thinking?

I sat down and stared at the building, wondering where the roof had gone and what had occurred when it had vanished. Did my father fight, or was he slain upon arrival? Did he arrive?

Finally, as the sun slowly began to set, I stood up and walked away.

The boy within me needed the hope that his father was still alive.

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April 3, 1930


From the Gods’ Hollow journal of Duncan Blood.

April 3, 1930. I have brought the Colts with me. The pistols served me well for the entirety of the War of Secession, and on the rare occasions I have had need of them since Lee’s surrender.

I came upon Belle’s mansion, or what is left of it. Her home has been missing since before Lincoln was elected to office, and she was fortunate not to have been home when Cross claimed it as its own. Her brother, Axel, was not lucky, and so I entered the ruins of her home in search of his remains.

Instead, if found living beasts.

I can only assume that the creatures I encountered were the result of Belle’s missing brother having procreated with whatever fell beasts inhabit the place beyond Gods’ Hollow.

They were vaguely human and their voices were curiously pitched, the words unintelligible and difficult to bear as they clouded my thoughts. Their meanings became clear, however, when they attempted to take me prisoner.

I slew at least a score of them as I fought my way out of the ruins.

My hands ache and my body is numb. It has been years since I have killed so many at one time.

My ears still ring and I can still taste death in the air around me. Members of the Cross Militia have positioned themselves along the North Road to ensure the safety of the town.

I will allow no one else to enter Gods’ Hollow.

I fear that worse creatures await discovery.

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February 28, 1901


What do we know of madness?

This was a question that Dr. George Merrimac asked himself, and it was a question he valiantly sought to answer.

George was an accomplished psychologist, one whom many of his colleagues went to when dealing with particularly troublesome patients. In a time when hysteria was a common diagnosis for any woman who failed to fall in line with the standards of society, George was an outspoken opponent of such a diagnosis.

Thus, when George, a widower, retired at the age of 68 to Cross, it was unsurprising that he sought to help those who were tucked away in the maddening labyrinth of lunatic asylums and poor houses.

In an effort to determine how imprisonment affected the perception of reality, George purchased an old ‘coffin,’ a device used in Vienna, Austria to restrain lunatics.

He wrote a letter to Dr. Mitchell Anderson, a colleague in Boston, requesting that the man visit him at his home on 1st of March 1899. The letter contained explicit instructions on where to find a key to the home and, more importantly, the key Dr. Merrimac’s private study in the basement.

Dr. Anderson received the letter on the 27th of February 1901.

Curious as to why his friend wanted him to visit, and why he had left such detailed instructions, Dr. Anderson traveled to Cross on February 28, 1901. Once inside his friend’s home, Mitchell was disturbed by the dust on the furniture.

With a rising sense of panic, Mitchell descended the stairs to the private study, let himself in, and found the remains of Dr. Merrimac in the ‘coffin.’

When Mitchell managed to open the device, the remnants of George fell out, and two facts were painfully clear.

The first, Dr. Merrimack’s fingernails were embedded in the wood of the door.

And the second, the corpse’s teeth were ground to nubs.

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February 27, 1905


Vengeance is a bitter draught.

Axel St. Anselm was a man who felt himself wronged.

Life, as far as he was concerned, never did him a kindness. Not a single one. So, he treated the world in a like manner. He was a thief, a murder, and a rapist. What he wanted, he took.

In May of 1902, Axel attempted to take from Ms. Charlene Roi, the librarian at the Cross Social Library. Unfortunately for Axel, the librarian was far stronger than she looked, and the large book with which she struck him knocked him out. When he eventually awoke, he found himself in chains and awaiting transportation to prison.

Axel served three years and was released on February 27th, 1905, and made straight for Cross.

Over the years he had been able to learn where Charlene lived.

He had planned his revenge to the finest detail. Axel knew when he would strike, and how he would strike.

He knew Charlene lived in a small house with a sponsoring family. He understood that she went to bed early, and that on most nights the family she resided with spent their time in the parlor, playing charades.

Axel was a skilled criminal, and since there was little crime in Cross, he was not surprised to find the back door unlocked. The laughter of the family hid his nearly silent steps as he crept up to Charlene’s room.

Her bedroom was small and tucked away in the attic. Far from prying eyes and ears.

Axel was unarmed for he was a man who prided himself on his ability to kill without a weapon.

Charlene was armed, with a large revolver, and she shot him twice, creating a hole large enough for someone to put a fist in.

When her sponsors reached her, she was sitting on her bed, the fire in her small stove burning brightly, the flames devouring the letters she had sent to Axel, inviting him to visit.

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February 23, 1864


The world is far stranger than we think.

On February 23, 1864, at the First Battle of Dalton in Georgia, Sergeant Niles Angel of Cross, Massachusetts was wounded.

He was in the process of rallying his men when he was struck by numerous bullets, the soft, malleable lead tearing through him. When he was first brought to the field surgeon, it was believed that his left arm was the most grievous of his injuries and that he had lost far too much of it for the limb to be saved.

Still, the surgeon did his best. He cut away as much of the meat as he could, stitched it together when he was done and went in search of further injuries.

The surgeon found them.

More importantly, he found a wound that should have negated the good sergeant’s continued existence.

At least one of the bullets, the surgeon saw, had torn through Sergeant Angel’s heart.

The heart was not merely damaged but destroyed.

Most of that muscle was gone, and what remained was little more than shredded tissue.

Yet Sergeant Angel continued to live.

Lived and thrived.

He was sent home to convalesce, where his grievous injury was kept from everyone except his wife.

Following the conclusion of the war and Sergeant Angel’s mustering out, he worked as a porter for the Boston & Maine Railroad and fathered three children with his wife.

Sergeant Angel died at the age of 57 when a horse stove in the side of his head.

His children only learned of their father’s curious history when their mother died 40 years later, and they read her journal.

When they opened the family mausoleum to intern their mother, the children discovered their father’s tomb was empty and had been for some time.

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